An Historic Event

Yesterday, with great joy, Freedom Friends Church celebrated the fresh recording of T. Vail Palmer. Here is the official minute

Minute of Recording
Freedom Friends Church
Salem, Oregon

At a regular meeting for worship through business on the 14th day of May, 2006, T. Vail Palmer was recorded as a minister of the Gospel. This recording was approved in recognition of Vail’s previous recorded ministry and service in New England Yearly Meeting, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting and Northwest Yearly Meeting. Vail came to us from Reedwood Friends Church with a letter recognizing 25 years of dedicated service. We recognize Vail’s public ministry to the Religious Society of Friends as a teacher, scholar, historian and vocal minister. Vail’s ministry has continued among us, and we are grateful to God for his service. We witness this gratitude by the signing of this minute.

More about Vail: Vail was born on June 9,1927 to Thompson V. and Esther L. Palmer. Vail graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1948, attended Oberlin Graduate school of Theology, and the University of Chicago as a recipient of the Lily Fellowship and earning a PH.D. in 1965. Vail served his God, and set an example for his country, by serving a term in a Federal Prison as a conscientious objector to war during the Korean conflict. He was a pastor in New England Yearly Meeting and first recorded there. Discerning that his gifts of public ministry were more educational than pastoral, he was recorded afresh at Arch Street Meeting in Philadelphia while that Yearly meeting still practiced the recording of ministers. He was a contemporary and lived in a communal setting with Lewis Benson and others seeking a revived Quaker experience. Upon moving to the West Coast in 1979 he joined Reedwood Friends Church, and his recording was received by transfer to Northwest Yearly Meeting. He was editor and co-editor of Quaker Religious Thought from 1974 - 1982. He directed Reedwood's Center for Christian Studies for 25 years. In 2005 he transferred his membership the Freedom Friends Church in Salem, Oregon. At that time he told his new pastor that he had been "waiting for this particular expression of Quakerism." Freedom Friends Church is honored to receive Vail.

We believe that it is possible that we witnessed a unique event in the Quaker world.

Vail has been a recorded minister in a FUM, FGC, EFI and now an unaffiliated "Convergent" meeting, a Fourth(!) distinct expression of Quakerism. If there are any other ministers out there who have been recorded in four expressions of Quakerism, we would like to hear about them.

I don't know if it's appropriate to say Congratulations or if I should say something more religious sounding. But I send you my best wishes and prayers for continued awareness of the blessings among you.
Wow, what "pedigree". I've (minimally) known of Friend Palmer's work from the past. How exciting that you have such a weighty Friend in your congregation's midst.

BTW, can I admit that I wish there was something similar in my town??? If I'm ever in your area of the world, I'd love to worship with you folks! And Robin is right: Congratulations!
Hey Peggy!

Kick ass!

By the way, there's an outside chance I might be passing through town in mid-June. Are you in town? Maybe I could talk you into a ride on one of the bikes? I haven't been on a bike since my dad took me around town as a kid on his hog.

Keep up the good work!

Rob you would be most welcome. Riding is always possible. There is a phone number and and e-mail on the church website. Let us know when you get here.
Joe - friend, you could always start a convergent church where you are! We have the blueprints available up here. By all means plan a visit.
Thanks for this, Peggy. Ben PD forwarded it to me. I have enjoyed good times of fellowship with Vail, particularly with Quaker Theological Discussion Group in the latter 1970s. Please pass my greetings on to him. What I want to know is, does multiple recording amount to overdubbing? Or is that just my four-track mind at work? -- Doug Gwyn (last seen pastoring at First Friends Meeting, Richmond, IN)
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